Rooney issues City warning

Image: Wayne Rooney: Manchester United striker expects another tight title race

Wayne Rooney has told Manchester City that defending the Premier League title is more difficult than winning it.

United star tells rivals they are now the team to beat

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has told Manchester City that defending the Premier League title is more difficult than winning it. City pipped their derby rivals to last season's title in dramatic fashion, winning their first league championship since 1968. United have won four Premier League titles with Rooney, twice as defending champions, and the England star has warned Roberto Mancini's men they will be the team everyone wants to beat this season. "It'll be a different situation for them, something they've never experienced before but we know about it," Rooney said. "We know all about it when you're trying to defend your trophy. We know that over the years, everyone has tried to raise their game when they play against Manchester United. "Now obviously City are champions they'll have to face that. Sometimes it can be more difficult."

Final-day heartache

City's last-gasp victory over QPR meant United ended a season empty-handed for the first time since 2004/05. But Rooney is confident United, who start the season against his former club Everton on 20th August, can put that final-day disappointment behind them and regain the Premier League crown. "I'm not sure we need any more motivation but to lose that way was difficult for us to take," he said. "It's a good chance for us now to bounce back from that. "We know how hard you have to work to try to win it back but hopefully come the end of the season we'll have it back. "City have got some great players. Chelsea have spent a lot of money, so it'll be a close-run thing. "But this is our chance to show everyone we are a good team and we're capable of winning the league. That's obviously our aim this season. "Ending the campaign without a trophy is a rare thing for United. But we felt we were unlucky in the league. "We know we let ourselves down in Europe. That's something we've had to think about. I'm sure we'll be a lot better this season. "Our first aim will be to improve on last year and we can do that. It's a big season for us after last season and we all need to be ready for it."

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